Further hope that Clarissa McCarthy's remains can be exhumed

THE mum of murdered west Cork girl Clarissa McCarthy is hopeful that her daughter’s remains will be able to be removed from the coffin she shares with the father who murdered her.

US-based Rebecca Saunders is seeking an exhumation so that she can have her remains taken to the US to be near her.

In an update on a GoFundMe page set up to raise funds for her legal route to have her daughter exhumed, she said a funeral director has assured her “that, once the exhumation is carried out they could indeed separate Clarissa from her murderer”.

She continued: “I feel so relieved at this news since that was the biggest question in my mind as we go forward in applying to exhume Clarissa. 

"I received the death certificate for the murderer that I need for the application today and, all going well, I plan to have all the paperwork I need completed and posted by the middle of May.” 

Three-year-old Clarissa was murdered in 2013 by her dad Martin, who also killed himself. The family lived in Ballydehob.

Martin and Rebecca met after she travelled to West Cork as a teenager and were married in 2006. Clarissa was born three years later. Rebecca now hopes to one day have her daughter’s remains exhumed and taken to the US, where she now lives with her second husband and two young daughters.

The father and daughter were buried in one coffin in a graveyard in West Cork.

Martin killed Clarissa and took his own life at Audley Cove while Rebecca had travelled to Bantry to attend information about free legal aid to help her fight for divorce from 50-year-old Martin. He was 24 years her senior.

Rebecca had regularly taken her daughter to Audley Cove in her short life.

Martin left a suicide note for his wife, saying he feared she would take their daughter back to her native California.

Support and helplines:

Samaritans 116 123 

Aware Helpline: 1890 303 302 

GROW 1890 474 474 

Pieta House 1800 247 247

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